Lenes headed to Europe.

Peter Lenes appears ready to bequeath his title of “fan favorite.”

The 5-foot-4 forward told the Burlington (VT) Free Press that he has signed with the Graz 99ers, which play in the top league in Austria. The 99ers are coached by Bill Gilligan, whose brother, Mike Gilligan, once coached Lenes’ alma mater, the University of Vermont. Former Reign forward Tony Voce played one season (2008-09) in Graz.

Lenes had 13 goals and 23 points in 58 games in his rookie season with the Reign, but only two goals and one assist after Dec. 12. His ice time rose steeply after Jon Rheault and Geoff Walker were promoted to the AHL in late November, then dropped as his production fell off.

“My numbers went down and I think there were some things the coach and I
maybe didn’t agree on. That’s the way things go sometime, so you keep
working hard and work through those times,” Lenes told the paper. “I don’t truly know
all the things (leading to less time), but if you don’t play a game,
you’ve got to stay positive.”

Here is the full story.

This entry was posted in Ontario Reign/ECHL and tagged , , by J.P. Hoornstra. Bookmark the permalink.

About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.
  • Bob Terry

    We will truly miss “Petey”, especially all of us in section 115/116. We adopted a rescue dog in February, a 3 1/2 lb. chihuahua/hamster mix (joke) and we didn’t even hesitate in naming him Petey because he was small but he was a hard ass and we wish Peter all the best and God Bless.

  • Crossbar

    Petey’s performance leading up to the All Star game was truly one of the highlights of this past season, but the team’s current needs and his decline in offensive production (and ice time) thereafter made it pretty clear to this observer that his days with Ontario were numbered. He mentions in the article that the Austrian League features more skill and less hitting, and this should play to his strengths. Teams were able to knock him off the puck pretty easily from what I recall, and though I wish him all the best in his pursuit of an NHL career, it’s going to be an uphill battle when one considers the size of forwards in the NHL today. All in all, I certainly enjoyed watching him play for the Reign. His hustle and perseverance were constants which should serve him well in his new environs overseas.

    Glueck auf, Petey! Graz ist eine schoene Stadt!

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